Angelo De Augustine ★★★
Tomb ASTHMATIC KITTY. CD/DL/LP
Sufjan Stevens-favoured LA songwriter’s third album, a break-up special.
There are few more naked admissions of a broken heart than the song title You Needed Love I Needed You (track three here). Tomb was written right after its author received a letter bearing the bad news, yet De Augustine hasn’t audibly cracked up: his high, breathy voice, closemiked for maximum intensity over acoustic guitar and pale murmurs from feathered drums and keyboards/FX, is wistful but composed. His is an even more serene take on his principal influences, Elliott Smith and Sufjan Stevens (whose label he’s signed to). More blood on the tracks might have upped the ante, but as it stands Tomb is still a gorgeous wallow, with producer Doveman’s minimalist touches left to indicate cracks in the façade: the whistling wind introducing Tide, the Walk On The Wide Side bass enriching Time, the lonely pulsations behind Somewhere Far Away From Home.